A bit of a digression from the normally scheduled (and alphabetic) content, I give you a healthy/delicious vegan recipe from my month of meat and dairy-free eating.
BBQ Tofu Pizza
½ block of tofu, cut into small cubes
1 tablespoon adobo seasoning
1 tablespoon cumin
½ tablespoon paprika
A dash of salt
A dash of pepper
½ a head of cauliflower
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 pkg. of premade pizza dough
½ cup, bbq sauce (I like Sweet Baby Ray’s)
1 fresh avocado, cubed
Heat the oven to 425.
Take the pizza dough out of the fridge, and allow it to sit for 20 minutes.
In the mean time, fill a pot halfway with water, and heat on high. Grab a fry pan and heat a tablespoon of olive oil on medium-high.
Slice the tofu into 6-8 thick pieces and season with the cumin, paprika, adobo, salt and pepper. Place the tofu into the hot pan and heat until a crust forms, about 2-3 minutes on both sides. Remove from heat and allow it to cool. Once cooled, dice the cooked tofu and put into a medium bowl and mix with barbecue sauce.
Cut the cauliflower into small florets and drop into the pot of bowling water. Cook for 7-8 minutes, until the cauliflower is tender. Remove from the cauliflower from the water (Note: do not dump the water!) and put into a blender or food processor.
Add ½ a cup of the water to the cauliflower, as well as a sprinkle of adobo seasoning and olive oil. Puree until the mixture is smooth and resembles a sauce.
On a floured or greased surface, stretch out the pizza dough until it is about the size of a baking pan. Spray a cookie sheet with oil and carefully place the dough on it.
Put into the oven and bake for five minutes.
Remove from the oven and top with the cauliflower sauce, making sure it’s evenly spread. Add the tofu and put back into the oven for another 10 minutes.
While the pizza cooks, cut up the avocado into small pieces.
Once the crust is golden brown and the sauce is bubbling, take out of the oven and top with the avocado.
As delicious as meatless recipes like this were, it was so hard to not only avoid meat, but dairy. Towards the end, it was so difficult… I’d walk past a restaurant and the smell of meat would make my stomach growl and don’t get me started with the cheese section at the grocery store. (I had dreams of eating chicken and scarfing down big juicy burgers)
If you want to attempt a meatless month, I suggest the following:
Research, research, research! I read numerous articles by doctors and dietitians on vegan diets to ensure I didn’t deprive myself of vitamins and other nutrients needed to function properly.
Read the labels. With a vegan diet, a lot of processed foods (most are terrible for you anyway) contain milk or eggs, so pay attention the the nutritional labels. PETA has a comprehensive list on “accidentally vegan” products.
Keep it interesting. Blogs focused on veganism were a saving grace. I found a ton of delicious recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner, even dessert.
Some of my favorite vegan blogs:
Minimalist Baker— Not a strictly vegan blog, but 99% of the recipes are vegan and completely tasty
Oh She Glows— The Martha Stewart of veganism, Angela Liddon is the authority on stunning (visually and munch-wise) vegan recipes
Oh My Veggies— Vegetarian/Vegan blog with recipes for those with more adventurous palates